Saturday, December 07, 2013

Nelson Mandela, the Man!

Nelson Mandela 1918-2013
“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”
― Nelson Mandela


Nelson Mandela Biography


Nelson Mandela was born on July 18, 1918, in Mveso, Transkei, South Africa. Becoming actively involved in the anti-apartheid movement in his 20s, Mandela joined the African National Congress in 1942. For 20 years, he directed a campaign of peaceful, nonviolent defiance against the South African government and its racist policies. In 1993, Mandela and South African President F.W. de Klerk were jointly awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for their efforts to dismantle the country's apartheid system. In 1994, Mandela was inaugurated as South Africa's first black president. In 2009, Mandela's birthday (July 18) was declared "Mandela Day" to promote global peace and celebrate the South African leader's legacy. Mandela died at his home in Johannesburg on December 5, 2013, at age 95.
Early Life

Nelson Mandela was born Rolihlahla Mandela on July 18, 1918, in the tiny village of Mvezo, on the banks of the Mbashe River in Transkei, South Africa. "Rolihlahla" in the Xhosa language literally means "pulling the branch of a tree," but more commonly translates as "troublemaker."
Nelson Mandela's father, who was destined to be a chief, served as a counselor to tribal chiefs for several years, but lost both his title and fortune over a dispute with the local colonial magistrate. Mandela was only an infant at the time, and his father's loss of status forced his mother to move the family to Qunu, an even smaller village north of Mvezo. The village was nestled in a narrow grassy valley; there were no roads, only foot paths that linked the pastures where livestock grazed. The family lived in huts and ate a local harvest of maize, sorghum, pumpkin and beans, which was all they could afford. Water came from springs and streams and cooking was done outdoors. Mandela played the games of young boys, acting out male rights-of-passage scenarios with toys he made from the natural materials available, including tree branches and clay.
At the suggestion of one of his father's friends, Mandela was baptized in the Methodist Church. He went on to become the first in his family to attend school. As was custom at the time, and probably due to the bias of the British educational system in South Africa, Mandela's teacher told him that his new first name would be Nelson.
When Mandela was 9 years old, his father died of lung disease, causing his life to change dramatically. He was adopted by Chief Jongintaba Dalindyebo, the acting regent of the Thembu people—a gesture done as a favor to Mandela's father, who, years earlier, had recommended Jongintaba be made chief. Mandela subsequently left the carefree life he knew in Qunu, fearing that he would never see his village again. He traveled by motorcar to Mqhekezweni, the provincial capital of Thembuland, to the chief's royal residence. Though he had not forgotten his beloved village of Qunu, he quickly adapted to the new, more sophisticated surroundings of Mqhekezweni.
Mandela was given the same status and responsibilities as the regent's two other children, his son and oldest child, Justice, and daughter Nomafu. Mandela took classes in a one-room school next to the palace, studying English, Xhosa, history and geography. It was during this period that Mandela developed an interest in African history, from elder chiefs who came to the Great Palace on official business. He learned how the African people had lived in relative peace until the coming of the white people. According to the elders, the children of South Africa had previously lived as brothers, but white men had shattered this fellowship. While black men shared their land, air and water with whites, white men took all of these things for themselves.
When Mandela was 16, it was time for him to partake in the traditional African circumcision ritual to
mark his entrance into manhood. The ceremony of circumcision was not just a surgical procedure, but an elaborate ritual in preparation for manhood. In African tradition, an uncircumcised man cannot inherit his father's wealth, marry or officiate at tribal rituals. Mandela participated in the ceremony with 25 other boys. He welcomed the opportunity to partake in his people's customs and felt ready to make the transition from boyhood to manhood. His mood shifted during the proceedings, however, when Chief Meligqili, the main speaker at the ceremony, spoke sadly of the young men, explaining that they were enslaved in their own country. Because their land was controlled by white men, they would never have the power to govern themselves, the chief said. He went on to lament that the promise of the young men would be squandered as they struggled to make a living and perform mindless chores for white men. Mandela would later say that while the chief's words didn't make total sense to him at the time, they would eventually formulate his resolve for an independent South Africa.
From the time Mandela came under the guardianship of Regent Jongintaba, he was groomed to assume high office, not as a chief, but a counselor to one. As Thembu royalty, Mandela attended a Wesleyan mission school, the Clarkebury Boarding Institute and Wesleyan College, where, he would later state, he achieved academic success through "plain hard work." He also excelled at track and boxing. Mandela was initially mocked as a "country boy" by his Wesleyan classmates, but eventually became friends with several students, including Mathona, his first female friend.
In 1939, Mandela enrolled at the University College of Fort Hare, the only residential center of higher learning for blacks in South Africa at the time. Fort Hare was considered Africa's equivalent of the University of Oxford or Harvard University, drawing scholars from all parts of sub-Sahara Africa. In his first year at the university, Mandela took the required courses, but focused on Roman Dutch law to prepare for a career in civil service as an interpreter or clerk—regarded as the best profession that a black man could obtain at the time.
In his second year at Fort Hare, Mandela was elected to the Student Representative Council. For some time, students had been dissatisfied with the food and lack of power held by the SRC. During this election, a majority of students voted to boycott unless their demands were met. Aligning with the student majority, Mandela resigned from his position. Seeing this as an act of insubordination, the university's Dr. Kerr expelled Mandela for the rest of the year and gave him an ultimatum: He could return to the school if he agreed to serve on the SRC. When Mandela returned home, the regent was furious, telling him unequivocally that he would have to recant his decision and go back to school in the fall.
Mandela's Imprisonment

A few weeks after Mandela returned home, Regent Jongintaba announced that he had arranged a marriage for his adopted son. The regent wanted to make sure that Mandela's life was properly planned, and the arrangement was within his right, as tribal custom dictated. Shocked by the news, feeling trapped and believing that he had no other option than to follow this recent order, Mandela ran away from home. He settled in Johannesburg, where he worked a variety of jobs, including as a guard and a clerk, while completing his bachelor's degree via correspondence courses. He then enrolled at the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg to study law.
Mandela soon became actively involved in the anti-apartheid movement, joining the African National Congress in 1942. Within the ANC, a small group of young Africans banded together, calling themselves the African National Congress Youth League. Their goal was to transform the ANC into a mass grassroots movement, deriving strength from millions of rural peasants and working people who had no voice under the current regime. Specifically, the group believed that the ANC's old tactics of polite petitioning were ineffective. In 1949, the ANC officially adopted the Youth League's methods of boycott, strike, civil disobedience and non-cooperation, with policy goals of full citizenship, redistribution of land, trade union rights, and free and compulsory education for all children.
For 20 years, Mandela directed peaceful, nonviolent acts of defiance against the South African government and its racist policies, including the 1952 Defiance Campaign and the 1955 Congress of the People. He founded the law firm Mandela and Tambo, partnering with Oliver Tambo, a brilliant student he'd met while attending Fort Hare. The law firm provided free and low-cost legal counsel to unrepresented blacks.
In 1956, Mandela and 150 others were arrested and charged with treason for their political advocacy (they were eventually acquitted). Meanwhile, the ANC was being challenged by Africanists, a new breed of black activists who believed that the pacifist method of the ANC was ineffective. Africanists soon broke away to form the Pan-Africanist Congress, which negatively affected the ANC; by 1959, the movement had lost much of its militant support.
In 1961, Mandela, who was formerly committed to nonviolent protest, began to believe that armed struggle was the only way to achieve change. He subsequently co-founded Umkhonto we Sizwe, also known as MK, an armed offshoot of the ANC dedicated to sabotage and guerilla war tactics to end apartheid. In 1961, Mandela orchestrated a three-day national workers' strike. He was arrested for leading the strike the following year, and was sentenced to five years in prison. In 1963, Mandela was brought to trial again. This time, he and 10 other ANC leaders were sentenced to life imprisonment for political offenses, including sabotage.
Nelson Mandela was incarcerated on Robben Island for 18 of his 27 years in prison. During this time, he contracted tuberculosis and, as a black political prisoner, received the lowest level of treatment from prison workers. However, while incarcerated, Mandela was able to earn a Bachelor of Law degree through a University of London correspondence program.
A 1981 memoir by South African intelligence agent Gordon Winter described a plot by the South African government to arrange for Mandela's escape so as to shoot him during the recapture; the plot was foiled by British intelligence. Mandela continued to be such a potent symbol of black resistance that a coordinated international campaign for his release was launched, and this international groundswell of support exemplified the power and esteem that Mandela had in the global political community.
In 1982, Mandela and other ANC leaders were moved to Pollsmoor Prison, allegedly to enable contact between them and the South African government. In 1985, President P.W. Botha offered Mandela's release in exchange for renouncing armed struggle; the prisoner flatly rejected the offer. With increasing local and international pressure for his release, the government participated in several talks with Mandela over the ensuing years, but no deal was made. It wasn't until Botha suffered a stroke and was replaced by Frederik Willem de Klerk that Mandela's release was finally announced—on February 11, 1990. De Klerk also unbanned the ANC, removed restrictions on political groups and suspended executions.
Prison Release and Presidency

Upon his release from prison, Nelson Mandela immediately urged foreign powers not to reduce their pressure on the South African government for constitutional reform. While he stated that he was committed to working toward peace, he declared that the ANC's armed struggle would continue until the black majority received the right to vote.
In 1991, Mandela was elected president of the African National Congress, with lifelong friend and colleague Oliver Tambo serving as national chairperson. Mandela continued to negotiate with President F.W. de Klerk toward the country's first multiracial elections. White South Africans were willing to share power, but many black South Africans wanted a complete transfer of power. The negotiations were often strained and news of violent eruptions, including the assassination of ANC leader Chris Hani, continued throughout the country.
Mandela had to keep a delicate balance of political pressure and intense negotiations amid the demonstrations and armed resistance.
In 1993, Mandela and President de Klerk were jointly awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for their work toward dismantling apartheid. And due in no small part to their work, negotiations between black and white South Africans prevailed: On April 27, 1994, South Africa held its first democratic elections. Nelson Mandela was inaugurated as the country's first black president on May 10, 1994, at the age of 77, with de Klerk as his first deputy.
Also in 1994, Mandela published an autobiography, Long Walk to Freedom, much of which he had secretly written while in prison. The following year, he was awarded the Order of Merit.
From 1994 until June 1999, Mandela worked to bring about the transition from minority rule and apartheid to black majority rule. He used the nation's enthusiasm for sports as a pivot point to promote reconciliation between whites and blacks, encouraging black South Africans to support the once-hated national rugby team. In 1995, South Africa came to the world stage by hosting the Rugby World Cup, which brought further recognition and prestige to the young republic.
Mandela also worked to protect South Africa's economy from collapse during his presidency. Through his Reconstruction and Development Plan, the South African government funded the creation of jobs, housing and basic health care. In 1996, Mandela signed into law a new constitution for the nation, establishing a strong central government based on majority rule, and guaranteeing both the rights of minorities and the freedom of expression.
Retirement and Later Career

By the 1999 general election, Nelson Mandela had retired from active politics. He continued to maintain a busy schedule, however, raising money to build schools and clinics in South Africa's rural heartland through his foundation, and serving as a mediator in Burundi's civil war. He also published a number of books on his life and struggles, among them No Easy Walk to Freedom; Nelson Mandela: The Struggle is my Life; and Nelson Mandela's Favorite African Folktales.
Mandela was diagnosed and treated for prostate cancer in 2001. In June 2004, at the age of 85, he announced his formal retirement from public life and returned to his native village of Qunu.
On July 18, 2007, Mandela convened a group of world leaders, including Graca Machel (whom Mandela would wed in 1998), Desmond Tutu, Kofi Annan, Ela Bhatt, Gro Harlem Brundtland, Jimmy Carter, Li Zhaoxing, Mary Robinson and Muhammad Yunus, to address some of the world's toughest issues. Aiming to work both publicly and privately to find solutions to problems around the globe, the group was aptly named "The Elders." The Elders' impact has spanned Asia, the Middle East and Africa, and their actions have included promoting peace and women's equality, demanding an end to atrocities, and supporting initiatives to address humanitarian crises and promote democracy.
In addition to advocating for peace and equality on both a national and global scale, in his later years, Mandela remained committed to the fight against AIDS—a disease that killed Mandela's son, Makgatho, in 2005.
In Recent Years

Nelson Mandela made his last public appearance at the final match of the World Cup in South Africa in 2010. He remained largely out of the spotlight in his later years, choosing to spend much of his time in his childhood community of Qunu, south of Johannesburg. He did, however, visit with U.S. first lady Michelle Obama, wife of President Barack Obama, during her trip to South Africa in 2011.
After suffering a lung infection in January 2011, Mandela was briefly hospitalized in Johannesburg to undergo surgery for a stomach ailment in early 2012. He was released after a few days, later returning to Qunu. Mandela would be hospitalized many times over the next several years—in December 2012, March 2013 and June 2013—for further testing and medical treatment relating to his recurrent lung infection. Following his June 2013 hospital visit, Mandela's wife, Graca Machel, canceled a scheduled appearance in London to remain at her husband's his side, and his daughter, Zenani Dlamini, Argentina's South African ambassador, flew back to South Africa to be with her father. Jacob Zuma, South Africa's president, issued a statement in response to public concern over Mandela's March 2013 health scare, asking for support in the form of prayer: "We appeal to the people of South Africa and the world to pray for our beloved Madiba and his family and to keep them in their thoughts," Zuma said.
Death and Legacy

On December 5, 2013, at the age of 95, Nelson Mandela died at his home in Johannesburg, South Africa. Zuma released a statement later that day, in which he spoke to Mandela's legacy: "Wherever we are in the country, wherever we are in the world, let us reaffirm his vision of a society ... in which none is exploited, oppressed or dispossessed by another," he said. For decades to come, Nelson Mandela will continue to be a source of inspiration for civil rights activists worldwide.
In 2009, Mandela's birthday (July 18) was declared Mandela Day, an international day to promote global peace and celebrate the South African leader's legacy. According to the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory, the annual event is meant to encourage citizens worldwide to give back the way that Mandela has throughout his lifetime. A statement on the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory's website reads: "Mr. Mandela gave 67 years of his life fighting for the rights of humanity. All we are asking is that everyone gives 67 minutes of their time, whether it's supporting your chosen charity or serving your local community."
Personal Life

Mandela was married three times, beginning with Evelyn Ntoko Mase (m. 1944-1957). The couple had four children together: Madiba Thembekile, Makgatho (d. 2005), Makaziwe and Maki. Mandela wed Winnie Madikizela in 1958; the couple had two daughters together, Zenani and Zindziswa, before splitting in 1996. Two years later, Mandela married Graca Machel, with whom he remained until his death in 2013.
Nelson Mandela
APA Style
Nelson Mandela. (2013). The Biography Channel website. Retrieved 04:49, Dec 07, 2013, from
Harvard Style
Nelson Mandela. [Internet]. 2013. The Biography Channel website. Available from: [Accessed 07 Dec 2013].
MLA Style
"Nelson Mandela." 2013. The Biography Channel website. Dec 07 2013, 04:49
MHRA Style
"Nelson Mandela," The Biography Channel website, 2013, [accessed Dec 07, 2013].
Chicago Style
"Nelson Mandela," The Biography Channel website, (accessed Dec 07, 2013).
Nelson Mandela [Internet]. The Biography Channel website; 2013 [cited 2013 Dec 07] Available from:
Bluebook Style
Nelson Mandela, (last visited Dec 07, 2013).
AMA Style
Nelson Mandela. The Biography Channel website. 2013. Available at: Accessed Dec 07, 2013.

Backlash to Pro-Mandela Coverage

By Cliff Kincaid
December 17, 2013
British comedian Rowan Atkinson makes people laugh as the humorous “Mr. Bean.” But his brother, Rodney Atkinson, a political writer and commentator, isn’t laughing about the attempt by the media to make Nelson Mandela into a savior of South Africa.
He is quoted in the London Daily Telegraph as saying, “Mandela and his ANC [African National Congress] were about to turn South Africa into a Marxist, communist country when they were bought off by the American Democratic Party and big multi-national business who showered the new black rulers with wealth and power, and, above all, with favorable international media coverage, in the lead on which was, of course, the BBC, despite its treatment by that other genocidal racist Marxist, Robert Mugabe in Zimbabwe.”
It’s true that leading Democrats, such as former President Bill Clinton, have been raising money for the Nelson Mandela Foundation.
Meanwhile, Jim Allister, who represents a unionist political party in Northern Ireland, said, “I think the uncritical hysteria following the death is verging on propaganda.” He added, “Mandela had been blessed with a long life, drawn to a close only by natural causes—something brutally denied to the victims of his ANC and the victims of the IRA, which his ANC so avidly supported!” On December 6, he posted this comment: “When Baroness Thatcher died the BBC fell over itself to show balance; Mandela dies and BBC eschews anything approaching balance.”

The British Daily Mail reports that that the BBC aired more than 100 programs about Mandela in one week, and that a total of 1,834 viewers and listeners had complained “as the airwaves continue to be flooded with tributes disrupting radio and TV schedules.”
The BBC responded, “Nelson Mandela was one of the most important world leaders of the 20th century whose long and complex life story represents a moment of historical change for people in South Africa and around the world. His death was something we regarded as sufficiently significant both to break into our scheduled coverage and extend our news programs. His political and cultural influence was global and as both a UK and international broadcaster it is important that we reflected that, and the range of reactions to his death, to all our audience.
Some complaints are being directed against U.S. media coverage of Mandela, who was depicted even by some conservative commentators as a George Washington-type figure or a freedom fighter.

Going beyond this fawning coverage, NBC’s usually reliable foreign correspondent, Richard Engel, turned in a strangely positive story about a rising South African political figure by the name of Julius Malema, who has singled out white people for racist treatment and confiscation of their property.
Engel reported, “When Julius Malema was a teenager he was in the crowd cheering for Nelson Mandela. Now he’s running for president as champion of the have-nots. His plan is a radical redistribution. White South Africans, just 10% of the population, own most of the land.” Malema told Engel, “They [the whites] must give a portion of their land to black people.”
Malema is the head of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), which Engel forgot to mention is openly Marxist-Leninist. He used to run the Youth League of Mandela’s African National Congress (ANC). The group is a self-declared “radical, leftist, anti-capitalist and anti-imperialist movement with an internationalist outlook anchored by popular grassroots formations and struggles.”

The EFF manifesto includes “Expropriation of South Africa’s land without compensation for equal redistribution in use.”
A recent EFF event featured banners declaring the “Honeymoon is over for white people in South Africa,” and, “To be a revolutionary you have to be inspired by hatred and bloodshed.”
Rather than portray Malema as a serious threat to the white population, Engel depicted the whites in charge of the “white-owned farms” as backward thinking and fanatical in their determination to protect their land through force. Some were labeled as “white extremists” for training with weapons for self-defense.

The EFF also has a foreign policy that declares, “…we call on the Apartheid state of Israel to end its racist occupation of Palestinian lands, and join on the call for the international isolation of the Israel through boycotts, divestment and sanctions until they end the occupation. Furthermore, we join the international call on the release of the Cuban Five and lifting of the trade embargo on the Cuba and its people. We also believe that all economic sanctions on Zimbabwe must be lifted and the people of Zimbabwe must be given a chance to enjoy in the wealth of nations.”
The Cuban Five are Castro’s spies imprisoned in the U.S.

Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe, under fire for human rights violations and even accused of genocide, received “thunderous applause” from thousands of black people who turned out for the Mandela memorial service.
Instead, however, media attention has focused on a sign-language interpreter who was a fraud, and a “selfie” photograph joined in by Obama.

The prospect of “white genocide” in South Africa, however, is a non-story.
© 2013 Cliff Kincaid - All Rights Reserved
Cliff Kincaid, a veteran journalist and media critic, Cliff concentrated in journalism and communications at the University of Toledo, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree.

Cliff has written or co-authored nine books on media and cultural affairs and foreign policy issues. One of Cliff's books, "Global Bondage: The UN Plan to Rule the World" is still awailable.
Cliff has appeared on Hannity & Colmes, The O’Reilly Factor, Crossfire and has been published in the Washington Post, Washington Times, Chronicles, Human Events and Insight.
Cliff Kincaid is president of America’s Survival, Inc.

Is Mandela the Biggest Liar In History?
Understanding Mandela’s ideology, Communist
By Cliff Kincaid
Friday, December 13, 2013
A group called PunditFact has a “Truth-O-Meter” which says that Bill O’Reilly’s observation that Nelson Mandela was a communist is “correct,” but only “mostly true.” How something can be correct but only “mostly true” is not really explained. It is apparently a liberal’s way of saying that Mandela’s communism should be of no special significance, and that we should just ignore the fact that the world was deceived about his devotion to communism for several decades.
PunditFact is a project of PolitiFact, a winner of the Pulitzer Prize in journalism. It is a joint project of the St. Petersburg Times and Congressional Quarterly. It rates statements for truth or falsity, with “Pants on Fire” signifying a big lie.
The PunditFact group’s dishonest treatment of the controversy over Mandela’s communist record and motivation may be another indication that the liberal establishment cannot come to grips with the fact that Mandela deceived South Africa and the world for decades. The liberals were deceived as well and have now been caught red-faced. Their human rights icon turns out to have been a “Pants on Fire” liar who concealed his affiliation with a bloody movement that has taken more than 100 million lives. Whites in South Africa are now facing potential genocide, according to the Genocide Watch website.
Here’s the “ruling” from PunditFact, after reviewing O’Reilly’s observation and the evidence on the matter: “The weight of the historical evidence shows that O’Reilly is correct. For a time,
Mandela—despite his denials—appears to have been a member not only of the party but also of its central committee. However, it’s worth noting that Mandela’s affiliation with the party or its goals was never a dominant feature of his ideology or message. We rate O’Reilly’s claim Mostly True.”
The claim that Mandela was a communist only “for a time” is not clear. We are not sure how many years he belonged to the party. The key point is that he was a member “despite his denials,” which means that he lied through his teeth.
The claim that “Mandela’s affiliation with the party or its goals was never a dominant feature of his ideology or message” is totally false. Equally false is the group’s claim that “Mandela was not a
communist ideologue.”
We have noted evidence, even mentioned by Bill Keller of The New York Times, that the communists who run South Africa are still pursuing a Soviet-style strategy of revolutionary change. Mandela was a key part of implementing this strategy.
The PunditFact group fails to note that Mandela spoke to the 9th Congress of the South African Communist Party in 1992, decades after he was reported to be a member of the central committee of the South African Communist Party. He said, “It is not given to a leader of one political organization in a country to sing praises to the virtues of another. But that is what I intend to do today. If anything, this signifies the unique relationship between the African National Congress and the South African Communist Party.”
The African National Congress (ANC) was dominated by members of the South Africa Communist Party (SACP) and constitutes what is known as a communist front. The ANC rules South Africa today and President Jacob Zuma is a “former” high-ranking SACP member.
Four years later, on the occasion of the 75th anniversary of the South African Communist Party, Mandela, as president of South Africa, gave a speech to the SACP, saying, “I feel really honored to be part of this celebration of a historic day in South Africa`s political calendar. The 75th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party is a special occasion for South Africa. It is special because of the critical role the Party has played in our country`s history, because of its relevance to today`s politics; and because it is bound to make an impact on the future of our society.”
He went on to say, “The Alliance between the ANC and the Communist Party is therefore a natural result of a reality of social life that pervades our nation to this day.”
Speeches like this are critical to understanding Mandela’s ideology. He never disavowed the communist movement of which he was a central part. But PunditFact ignored these speeches. They can be easily obtained through searches on the website of the SACP.
PunditFact attempts to justify Mandela’s involvement with the Communist Party by saying, “For decades, there were few allies Mandela could have sought out in the fight against apartheid.” The SACP, which was established by white communists, was opposed to apartheid for propaganda reasons. Its real goal was the takeover of South Africa in order to make it a client state of the Soviet Union. The objective was to acquire control of strategically important southern Africa.
Southern Africa, with its strategic minerals, was a critical prize during the Cold War
Southern Africa, with its strategic minerals, was a critical prize during the Cold War. Soviet leader Leonid I. Brezhnev had told Somalian President Siad Barre, “Our aim is to gain control of the two great treasure houses on which the West depends—the energy treasure house of the Persian Gulf and the mineral treasure house of Central and Southern Africa.”
PunditFact says, “The Communist Party—due in part to its long fight against apartheid—does not have the same negative connotation in South Africa that it does in the United States.” Again, the SACP’s real goal was to assist in a Soviet takeover of the country. Both the SACP and the Communist Party USA were pawns of the Soviet Union. Any expert on communism will attest to that fact. But those experts were not consulted by PunditFact.
In order to try to diminish the significance of his membership in the SACP, PunditFact says, “It’s unclear whether Mandela ever formally resigned,” but that “There is no indication he was a party member at the time he was elected president after being released from prison.”
So if he didn’t formally resign, how do we know he left the party? PunditFact is trying to have it both ways. It is determined to play down the significance of Mandela’s big lie by suggesting there’s some question about how long he belonged to the SACP.
The bottom line is that Mandela lied about his party membership for decades and millions of people were fooled by him. He lied in order to rope in what are called “dupes” to the communist cause. It is a well-established strategy by communists, using front groups. In the case of South Africa, the SACP used the ANC, headed by Mandela. It was a perfect relationship, designed to fool foreign audiences, because Mandela was involved with both organizations.
The writer of this entry is identified as Louis Jacobson, PolitiFact Deputy Editor and a staff writer for the Tampa Bay Times. He apparently didn’t bother to do basic research into Mandela’s involvement with the SACP. Instead, he consulted various “experts” such as Danny Schechter, author of a book about Mandela, and Gerald Horne, identified as a University of Houston historian and author of From the Barrel of a Gun: The United States and the War against Zimbabwe, 1965-1980.
Schechter wrote the introduction to How We Won the War by the communist North Vietnamese General Vo Nguyen Giap. Schechter was a supporter of the communist military takeover of South Vietnam.
Gerald Horne is a contributing editor of the Communist Party journal, Political Affairs, and was the first to disclose that the mysterious “Frank” in Obama’s book Dreams From My Father was Communist Party member Frank Marshall Davis.
These sources clearly know something about communism, but not from the anti-communist perspective.
Left out of the Jacobson account is how sweeping Mandela’s denials of party membership and influence were.
Mandela’s famous “I am prepared to die” speech in 1964 included these whoppers:
“At the outset, I want to say that the suggestion made by the state in its opening that the struggle in South Africa is under the influence of foreigners or communists is wholly incorrect.”
“…I am not a communist and I have never been a member of the Communist Party…”
In addition, as we pointed out, Mandela was lying about his devotion to communism as recently as a few years ago. He told Richard Stengel of Time magazine that he had been “anti-communist” and only went to the SACP meetings because he was “invited.” He rejected Marxism as a “foreign ideology.”
“At his arrest in August 1962, Nelson Mandela was not only a member of the then underground South African Communist Party, but was also a member of our Party’s Central Committee,” the SACP says. “To us as South African communists, Cde [Comrade] Mandela shall forever symbolize the monumental contribution of the SACP in our liberation struggle. The contribution of communists in the struggle to achieve the South African freedom has very few parallels in the history of our country. After his release from prison in 1990, Cde Madiba became a great and close friend of the communists till his last days.”
The African National Congress confirmed that “Madiba [Mandela] was also a member of the South African Communist Party, where he served in the Central Committee.”
PolitiFact didn’t really lie outright about the substantial evidence of Mandela’s communism. The website included some of it, such as the SACP statement. But it still deserves a “Pants on Fire” rating for trying to obscure and play down the hard facts and the truth and for failing to explore the implications of Mandela’s fraudulent behavior and lies.
In fairness, however, O’Reilly should have originally cited evidence for his observation that Mandela was a communist.
On Monday, he seemed to somewhat back away from the observation, after being criticized for it by leftist MSNBC agitator Al Sharpton. “As a young man,” O’Reilly observed, “Nelson Mandela had Marxist leanings and dealt closely with communists. Check out a recent article in ‘The Economist’ magazine, if you want specifics on that. Anyone who knows anything about South Africa understands Mr. Mandela’s philosophy.”
Mandela, in O’Reilly’s world, went from a communist to merely having Marxist leanings in his youth. What’s more, The Economist is not a good source on this. The best sources are the ones cited by Accuracy in Media and confirmed by the South African Communist Party and now Mandela’s own ANC.
At stake is not only the $500 million a year in U.S. foreign aid to South Africa, but how a figure glorified by people on the left and right is going to be viewed historically and in textbooks by our young people.
Objectively, Mandela should go down in history as a communist who manipulated a movement and a country, enlisting the “global community” in the process. This is truly an achievement, but not one that in the ultimate analysis will keep South Africa truly free and independent. South Africa today is “joined at the hip” to Communist Cuba, and South African President Jacob Zuma has signed a strategic partnership agreement with Vladimir Putin’s Russia.
In calling Mandela a great friend of the Soviet Union/Russia, Putin said, “It was our country—the Soviet Union—that in the most active manner supported South Africa and other countries in Africa in their fight against racial segregation, their fight for justice and democracy.”
Notice Putin’s reference to “our country” as the USSR.
South Africa and Russia are moving ahead together. The recent report, “Russia–South Africa Relations: Beyond Revival,” issued by the George Soros-funded Open Society Foundation for South Africa (OSF-SA), said, “The development of mineral resources—particularly diamonds, gold, manganese, platinum group metals, and rare earth elements—is one of the most promising areas of bilateral co-operation.”
It looks like Brezhnev’s prediction may be coming true.
It appears to be the case, in the words of the Tom Cruise movie “A Few Good Men,” that most of the media just can’t “handle the truth” about Mandela and the foreign interests he served. They don’t want to admit that their hero, who personified “forgiveness” and “reconciliation,” should go down in history as one of the biggest liars and con artists of all time.
Cliff Kincaid is the Editor of the AIM Report.
Cliff can be reached at
Mandela Embodied the Victories and Failures of the South African Liberation Struggle
Global Research, December 06, 2013
The world is remembering Nelson Mandela, the anti-apartheid leader who spent 27 years in prison on his way to defeating apartheid and becoming South Africa’s first black elected leader.
Now joining us to talk about Nelson Mandela and his legacy is Glen Ford. He’s the cofounder and executive editor of the Black Agenda Report. He also colaunched, produced, and hosted America’s Black Forum, the first nationally syndicated black news interview program on commercial television.

Mandela Embodied the Victories and Failures of the South African Liberation Struggle
JAISAL NOOR, TRNN PRODUCER: Welcome to The Real News Network. I’m Jaisal Noor in Baltimore.
The world is remembering Nelson Mandela, the anti-apartheid leader who spent 27 years in prison on his way to defeating apartheid and becoming South Africa’s first black elected leader.
Now joining us to talk about Nelson Mandela and his legacy is Glen Ford. He’s the cofounder and executive editor of the Black Agenda Report. He also colaunched, produced, and hosted America’s Black Forum, the first nationally syndicated black news interview program on commercial television.
Thank you for joining us, Glen.
NOOR: Now, Glen, Nelson Mandela obviously had a tremendous impact on South Africa and the world. Can you talk a little bit about his contributions?
FORD: Nelson Mandela, to both foreigners and to South Africans, is really a kind of embodiment of the South African liberation struggle. He is the spawn of a royal [koUs@] family from the Transvaal. He became a lawyer. And he was one of the founding members of the African National Congress’s youth wing. So this struggle has been his life’s work. He figured prominently in all of the milestones of the African National Congress’s rise to power. He was arrested in the 1956 great Treason Trial, when the South African white regime basically captured and detained all of the leadership of the anti-apartheid movement, including people from all races.
He was a founder, along with members of the Communist Party, of the armed wing of the African National Congress, the Umkhonto we Sizwe, which means spear of the people. So he’s not seen just as the world statesman that most foreigners and Americans think of him as, but he was one of those who were instrumental in launching the armed struggle in South Africa. In 1962, while running the armed wing and also making contacts all over the world on behalf of the struggle so that there would be support for this growing movement, he was captured and sentenced to life in prison. That was in 1962. And he did not emerge from prison until 1990.
But it’s important to understand that in the latter half of the ’80s, the white regime, which was fraying at the edges, which was under constant assault both from the oppressed nonwhite majority within South Africa but also militarily in Africa–it had suffered defeats at the hands of the Angolans and their Cuban allies in Angola, and the myth of South African military invulnerability had been shattered–the regime seems to have suffered at least a crisis of morale. And that finally resulted in Mandela being released without conditions in 1990. All of the parties that had been banned by the white regime were unbanned and made legal. And then we enter into this crucial period with Mandela now the unquestioned leader of not just the African National Congress but the resistance as a whole, this period from 1990 to 1994, when the negotiations begin in earnest as to what a free South Africa, a majority-ruled South Africa is going to look like. So when we talk about Nelson Mandela’s legacy, his legacy is the South Africa that we see today. And to speak of his accomplishments, we have to speak of the state of South Africa.
NOOR: Glen, I wanted to ask you about Nelson Mandela’s relationship with United States. He was on the U.S. government terrorist watchlist until as recently as 2008.
FORD: That’s right. And the United States government, which was a fast friend of apartheid, a loyal supporter of that regime, as were the Israelis, the United States designated as terrorist whoever the white apartheid South African regime designated as terrorist. And that of course included all of the resistance, all of the leaders of the African National Congress and the South African Communist Party who were partners, along with COSATU, the Congress of South African Trade Unions, in this great struggle against that regime. The United States would simply designate as terrorist whoever their allies the South Africans did. And somehow they grew so deep into the habit that they forgot to take Mandela’s name off the list until only a few years ago. He was officially a terrorist to the United States even as he was the president of South Africa.
NOOR: And, Glen, talk about what Mandela’s legacy means today. Ronnie Kasrils, who was a fighter with the ANC, just republished an introduction to his autobiography, Armed and Dangerous. Can you tell us about the significance of this?
FORD: Ronnie Kasrils is a friend of mine, and we’ve had extensive conversations about that critical period in South Africa from 1990, when Mandela and other political prisoners were released and the political parties that had been banned were unbanned, and 1994, when he finally had the first nonracial elections, which resulted in Nelson Mandela becoming president. During that four years, the parties, the resistance, those three main actors, were struggling with the question of shall we make this an easy transition for those who are in power, that is, the white minority and the corporations, domestic and multinational, that they defend, shall we avoid at all costs the kind of bloodbath that people had been expecting in South Africa before whites would relinquish power by making a deal that does not live up to our ideals, does not live up to the 1955 Freedom Charter, which had been the document, as far as South Africa’s people were concerned, the embodiment on paper of what the resistance was all about, shall we compromise with this document, which called for the nationalization of all the mines and the redistribution of the land in South Africa. That is a fundamental change. Or should we go, at this stage, at least, for a simple transition of government through a simple one man, one vote deal?
They chose, that is, the ANC, the South African Communist Party, and COSATU chose to make it an unfinished revolution, a change in regime, but not a change in the relationships of economic power, so that we had what’s been called the sunset clause. And the sunset clause was an agreement with the whites that the white civil service would be allowed to keep their jobs, well, for life and that there would be no nationalizations of the mines and the multinational corporations. That is, the economy would proceed as normal and the bloated bureaucracy which had been a welfare system for especially the Boer whites would remain in place. In return, blacks would get the vote.
What we have seen since that time is a South Africa that has made some progress in terms of providing housing, but was operating from such a deficit of services and resources to the overwhelmingly poor black majority that no transformation has taken place, and by many measurements the living conditions of the masses of people have gotten worse. So South Africa is now in a crisis that the deal that was made with this sunset clause, which puts much of the resources of South Africa out of reach of the state because of that agreement, starves the state of the resources that it needs in order to serve the people and make good on the promises of the revolution. So as we talk about the legacy of Nelson Mandela, that contradiction, which is coming to a head, is also part of his legacy.
NOOR: So, Glen, I want to end with just your final thoughts on what this revelation by Ronnie Kasrils means for the future of South Africa.
FORD: It was not so much a revelation but a conversation that Ronnie Kasrils and other members of the ANC and the South African Communist Party had been having for some time as they wrestle with the question of did we lose our nerve, did we in fact call the revolution prematurely, did we lack confidence in the masses of people, that they would stick with the revolution even in the face of this threatened massive bloodletting by the whites, did we compromise too much and lay the groundwork for the suffering that we see all around us. And Ronnie Kasrils has decided that the answer is yes. And he, as a veteran and a former member of the government under Nelson Mandela, says that he’s going to own up to the mistakes that he made, and he challenges others in the South African leadership to do similarly.NOOR: Glen Ford, thank you so much for joining us.FORD: Thank you.
NOOR: Thank you for joining us on The Real News Network.
Mandela Led Fight Against Apartheid, But Not Against Extreme Inequality
Global Research, December 06, 2013
Mandela deserves great credit for ending racial apartheid in South Africa, but his legacy includes the continuation of mass poverty
‘The mood here in South Africa is terribly somber.
This was the day that everyone knew would come. And in the last few months Mandela’s been in hospital four times.
But it’s hard to come to grips with the loss of someone who has ruled in a moral and spiritual way just as much as in a political way in his first five years as the president of the Democratic South Africa in 1994 to ’99.”
Patrick Bond is the Director of the Center for Civil Society and Professor at the University of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa. Bond is the author and editor of the recently released books, Politics of Climate Justice and Durban’s Climate Gamble.
Mandela Led Fight Against Apartheid, But Not Against Extreme Inequality

JAISAL NOOR, TRNN PRODUCER: Nelson Mandela has passed away. The larger-then-life anti-apartheid figure is leaving behind the legacy of being South Africa’s first black president. Here to give us his perspective on his life is Patrick Bond. Patrick is the director of the center for civil society and a professor at the University of KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa.Thank you for joining us, Patrick.
BOND: Jaisal, the mood here in South Africa is terribly somber. This was the day that everyone knew would come. And in the last few months Mandela’s been in hospital four times. But it’s hard to come to grips with the loss of someone who has ruled in a moral and spiritual way just as much as in a political way in his first five years as the president of the Democratic South Africa in 1994 to ’99. Prior to that, Mandela prepared the country for democracy.
He was released in February 1990 after 27 years in jail, and he skillfully maneuvered the negotiations so that at least political democracy, one person, one vote in the unitary state was one, whereas the prior rulers, the Afrikaner Nationalist Party, had tried all manner of gimmicks–Jim Crow laws and property-based voting–and had done their best to weaken ANC, also through slaughtering thousands of ANC activists in the period between 1990 and ’94. Mandela drove through negotiations, occasionally breaking them off, and showed the stature of someone who could forgive on a personal level, arrange the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, and also inspired the nation to do an extraordinary job of transiting from racial apartheid to a more normal democracy, albeit one with worsening inequality, worsening unemployment, worsening ecological conditions. And these too will be part of Mandela’s legacy.
NOOR: And, Patrick, can you talk more about this economic legacy that the African National Congress has left behind?
BOND: Yes. Well, the African National Congress will probably rule, thanks to how strong Mandela put together the coalition in 1994, for many years. It may be that in 2019 they face their first electoral challenge, and that will come because of policies that were adopted during Mandela’s time. I happened to work in his office twice, ’94 and ’96, and saw these policies being pushed on Mandela by international finance and domestic business and a neoliberal conservative faction within his own party. And that faction’s been outed when former minister of intelligence and minister of water Ronnie Kasrils, probably the country’s greatest white revolutionary ever, has made a major confession in a new edition of his autobiography, Armed and dangerous, in which he says, we were absolutely incapable of dealing with the period of 1990 to ’95, ’96, in which the left agenda, and possibly a socialist current that had been strong when the Soviet Union was a major benefactor–and when in 1990 the Soviet Union fell away, it looked like, as Ronnie Kasrils has put it, the confidence of the left within ANC had completely collapsed. And that meant that many concessions were made that if one looks back at them perhaps needn’t have been done. And that’s why Kasril’s statement does leave a shadow on Mandela’s government. He basically says that as a ruler Mandela gave in way too much to rich people. So he replaced racial apartheid with class apartheid.
NOOR: Patrick, can you tell us more about some of the details that Ronnie Kasrils has revealed in this writing?
BOND: Yes, indeed. It was really about this critical period just before the 1994 elections, and it included an International Monetary Fund loan to the incoming government that was arranged as the outgoing one had a transitional executive committee. And that loan called for the standard structural adjustment conditions at just about the same time, late 1993, the final constitution was agreed upon that gives property rights extraordinary dominance and also gave the central bank, the South African Reserve Bank, insulation from democracy–in addition, an agreement to prepay the apartheid debt, which Mandela for so many years, in the spirit of sanctions, indeed hand-in-hand with Martin Luther King, calling in the early 1960s for the United Nations and big international corporations to pull out of South Africa. And yet, unfortunately, Mandela felt the need to repay the loans–$25 billion worth–that were coming due as he became president in 1994. He later bitterly remarked about those loans having set back the cause of delivering desperately needed services. And in all of that time, one saw the distinction between the radical Mandela, who had endorsed Marxism back in the 1950s, as particularly the Freedom Charter of 1955 called for the expropriation of the mines and banks and monopoly capital and their sharing for the people as a whole–. When Mandela came out of prison in 1990, he said, that is the policy of the ANC and a change in that policy is inconceivable. But it was only a few months later before–I certainly witnessed that in Johannesburg in that transition period, 1990 to ’94–major compromises were made with big business. And big business basically said, we will get out of our relationship with the Afrikaner rulers if you let us keep, basically, our wealth intact and indeed to take the wealth abroad. And so exchange controls were relaxed very soon after Mandela took over. And just as he left office in 1999, big businesses said, we now want to take our money out of here forever. So they relisted from the Johannesburg Stock Exchange to London, New York, and Australia. So this is the great tragedy of capital flight. Big business never really believed in Mandela, never truly invested in the country. And there were more symbolic victories, like the Rugby World Cup that was won with Mandela promoting especially the Afrikaans-dominated team. And that was to great symbolic effect, but didn’t do much for delivering services and redistributing wealth. Our wealth redistribution was the second worst of major countries after Brazil, and now is much, much, much worse, is the worst major country in the world. A GINI coefficient that fell from about 0.56 to 0.67, meaning very, very extreme inequality, got much worse during Mandela’s government.
NOOR: And talk more about this inequality. It’s quite remarkable that a people breaking the bonds of apartheid are now facing greater inequality than they faced during apartheid.
BOND: Well, that’s right. And in a book, The Shock Doctrine, Naomi Klein describes this quite well. I think she in a sense describes the shock and awe of winning a victory and many people believing that these great leaders like Mandela, many of his colleagues were not only as sophisticated in getting the democracy–one person, one vote–that was always demanded, but also that they would deliver the Reconstruction and Development Programme–the promise is about 150 pages.
Soon thereafter, one of the other competing politicians, Gatsha Buthelezi, renamed this RDP–rumors, dreams, and promises. And, unfortunately, if you go through it, as I’ve done on commission from the African National Congress and audited that RDP, it was really only the more conservative elements that Mandela allowed to push through. His first major interview, for example, he said nationalization is not in the RDP. In fact, it is there on page 80. So this was one of the small indications that Mandela didn’t really have the agenda of redistribution. He wanted to manage a very tumultuous society where white Afrikaners, especially the generals in the army, did pose a major threat and where white business seemed to be, in the conditions of neoliberalism of the 1990s (with no other opposing force on the left in the world to work with), quite dominant, and pleasing big business was really the order of the day.
NOOR: Now, what are South Africans doing today to challenge the corporate grip on their government, on their economic policies? And what proposals are being discussed to decrease this continuing inequality?
BOND: Well, I’ve been spending a little bit of time with the trade unions in Johannesburg. Their leaders, like ['zwE.l@n.zi.m@.'], considered the most powerful left leader in the country, have not been in the least intimidated by the African National Congress’s continuing neoliberal policies, and they continue to oppose them very vocally.
In addition, the protests that continue at the grassroots level at probably about the highest rate per person in the world have typically demanded access to services–water and electricity, decent housing, and clinics for better medical care, and better schools, recreational facilities, waste removal. And these protests, they often pop up, and they fall back down. But you do get a sense being in this country for even a short amount of time that whether it was Nelson Mandela encouraging people to exercise their democratic muscles or just that pent-up demand that during the 1980s, when widespread resistance to apartheid intensified and a honeymoon of a small degree with Mandela nevertheless leading to widespread discontent at this state of affairs, where public policy is much more pro-banker than pro-people. And I suspect these will continue.
And maybe without Mandela’s overarching symbolic power and the glue that he represented in keeping this very diverse alliance within the African National Congress together, with that era now passed it may not be too long before the long-predicted split between the different factions of the ANC occurs, with somewhat corrupt and nationalist and Zulu ethnic faction currently in power continuing and more left-wing trade unions dropping out. In 2008, a similar split occurred when those close to Thabo Mbeki dropped out, and they got about 9 percent of the vote in the next year’s election. And it may well be that not in the 2014 but in the 2019 election, whoever is Jacob Zuma’s successor will face quite a challenge and the aura of claiming Mandela’s mantle will continue. That mantle, by the way, has been even claimed by the center-right party, the Democratic Alliance.
And I think everyone is mourning. There’s no question that this is a great tragedy, the death of a founder of a nation. And yet I think South Africans do a lot of behind-the-scenes negotiations as to what kind of new power bloc might emerge, and even a new party from Steve Biko’s former partner, Mamphela Ramphele, called Agang, has just come up. And these are the sorts of things that make the situation fluid even though the African National Congress still commands about 60 percent of the popular support.NOOR: Patrick Bond, thank you for joining us.BOND: Thank you.
NOOR: And thank you for joining us on The Real News Network.
Copyright The Real News Network, 2013
Nelson Mandela: Icon of Africa’s Liberation Struggle, Creation of the Real Movers and Shakers of the Global Scene
Global Research, December 06, 2013
Nelson Mandela has become one of the most publicised icons of liberation struggle in modern times, in Africa certainly, but even in Asia and South America. He will be popularly mourned and saluted by millions of people around the world and his passing will no doubt be hailed as the end of an era. Most associate his name with other greats like Martin Luther King and Mahatma Ghandi, but unlike these other patron saints, the ever smiling Mandela didn’t make enough enemies to be assassinated.
Nelson Mandela is to be respected for the part he played in trying to reconcile the inequalities and conflicts between the racial and economic divide that has troubled his country, a process that is nowhere near complete. Despite the veneer of apparent congeniality between black and white South Africans today, careful observation of social and political discourse and private conversations reveal that the racial mistrust and prejudice still runs deeply as ever and the injustices persist. Not that Mandela is to blame for the persistence, it’s just that civil war [that’s what the liberation struggle was] never ends with real forgiveness, justice and love, but always with grudges, bitterness and a lingering wish for revenge after the dust settles; and there’s not much leaders of liberation struggle can do about that.
In reality Nelson Mandela was a created icon of liberation struggle, a creation of the real movers and shakers of the global scene for a larger political agenda. Without the interest and obsession of foreign imperialist powers in South Africa’s massive mineral wealth, Mandela would have been forgotten in his jail [where he served a sentence for treason and terrorism] until the day he died or was released on humanitarian grounds in his twilight years.
Without all those billions of dollars of international sponsorship, fanning the flames of revolution through Mandela’s ANC party, and without the international limelight given to political activists in their frenzied aim of toppling the country and removing the hard-nose, anti-British, Afrikaner government, Nelson would have continued to be the relatively unknown and powerless leader-in-exile of an organization that had been divided and ineffective for decades while Britain controlled his country. It was only after the hard-nose, anti-British, Afrikaner government of South Africa liberated itself from colonial slavery to Britain, and powered itself into the prime position as an independent superpower on the African continent that the mega-powerful military industrial complex of the United States and Great Britain summoned the UN and their European allies to support the struggling ANC party and re-colonize his country.
The hidden motive behind the sanctions for crippling and replacing the independent-minded Afrikaner government of South Africa was the same as the strategy and motive for toppling the governments of Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya. In South Africa, the real global political players were slowly losing control over international trade and markets in strategic minerals. It was never really known [or admitted] outside the old government intelligence circles in South Africa that control over international trade and markets in strategic minerals strengthens the quest for global dominance. While South Africa was a British colony, that control was securely in the hands of the mega-powerful Anglo-American military industrial complex. But the Afrikaner government [having lost the war of independence against Britain half a century before] was slowly wrestling loose from imperialist control. Another civil war was needed to restore control. This time it was both black against white and black against black – Mandela’s ANC party also fought a relentless and often violent battle for supremacy against the Inkatha Freedom Party of the rival Zulu tribe.
Mainstream media created the myth that Nelson Mandela brought democracy to South Africa. But long after democratic governments had been established by and for European settlers and gradually duplicated for the other ethnic groups in the country, the vast majority of Mandela’s people were still living relatively undisturbed in vast rural areas under the dictatorship of tribal chiefs and their councils of warlords. Nelson Mandela and his ANC party fought for the privilege of taking over the democratic system established by the Europeans. Even today, the tribal chiefs in South Africa retain their authority, rights and privilege by tradition, not as a democratically elected office.
The harm that was done to the country as political violence evolved into a culture of crime and hatred will not be easily undone, not by Nelson Mandela’s ANC party. Given the character and vision of this tenacious man, he would have changed the attitudes of the people if he could. But, as the hard facts and evidence show, he was only a much photographed figurehead and very much sought-after-celebrity, but never any real transforming power. His influence over his followers and enemies was not nearly as great as the media has made out or he would no doubt have created a really great nation out of that troubled region in troubled Africa. In reality, Nelson Mandela’s rainbow republic still struggles to rise from the heap of human misery. It still staggers under the load of an opulent, gold and diamond studded crown of corrupt, super rich, upper-class back and white political supremacists.
Without realizing it, Nelson Mandela had helped his country become another minion of the United States rather than of Britain. The extent to which his organization bowed to its international patrons can be seen from the fact that his was the only government ever to voluntarily dismantle a nuclear weapons program; something established [possibly with help from Israel] as a guarantee of self-preservation by the independent-minded government of the Afrikaner legacy. His ANC party has become the key hired agency in Africa that enables the USA to achieve its unrivalled position in the world today.
Mandela was a man of courage, dignity and grace, ever optimistic and compassionate about his people, but neither he nor his party could fix all the problems created by foreign governments that schemed and plotted, connived and lobbied in their efforts to create enough chaos in the country to bring it to it’s knees and force upon it the status of a gold-plated banana republic. Did Africa’s icon of liberation really improve the lot of indigenous South Africans? Free, indeed, yes, South Africa’s people are free, free to be poor, free to be unemployed, robbed, raped and diseased. Many of his people would say they are definitely NO better off! But now they have their very own patron saint and that will keep them voting for his ANC party as long as his name is engraved upon it.
Nelson Mandela: Obama, Clinton, Cameron, Blair – Tributes of Shameful Hypocrisy
By Felicity Arbuthnot
Global Research, December 06, 2013
Url of this article:
Accusing politicians or former politicians of “breathtaking hypocrisy” is not just over used, it is inadequacy of spectacular proportions. Sadly, searches in various thesaurus’ fail in meaningful improvement.

The death of Nelson Mandela, however, provides tributes resembling duplicity on a mind altering substance.
President Obama, whose litany of global assassinations by Drone, from infants to octogenarians – a personal weekly decree we are told, summary executions without Judge, Jury or trial – stated of the former South African’s President’s passing:
“We will not likely see the likes of Nelson Mandela again ... His acts of reconciliation ... set an example that all humanity should aspire to, whether in the lives of nations or our own personal lives.
“I studied his words and his writings ... like so many around the globe, I cannot fully imagine my own life without the example that Nelson Mandela set, (as) long as I live I will do what I can to learn from him ... it falls to us ... to forward the example that he set: to make decisions guided not by hate, but by love ...”
Mandela, said the Presidential High Executioner, had: “... bent the arc of the moral universe toward justice.”(i)
Mandela, after nearly thirty years in jail (1964-1990) forgave his jailors and those who would have preferred to see him hung. Obama committed to closing Guantanamo, an election pledge, the prisoners still self starve in desperation as their lives rot away, without hope.
The decimation of Libya had no congressional approval, Yemen, Somalia, Pakistan and Afghanistan’s dismembered. Drone victims are a Presidential roll call of shame and horror and the Nobel Peace Laureate’s trigger finger still hovers over Syria and Iran, for all the talk of otherwise. When his troops finally limped out of Iraq, he left the biggest Embassy in the world and a proxy armed force, with no chance of them leaving being on even the most distant horizon.
Clearly learning, justice and being “guided by love” is proving bit of an uphill struggle. Ironically, Obama was born in 1964, the year Mandela was sentenced to jail and his “long walk to freedom.”
Bill Clinton, who (illegally, with the UK) ordered the near continual bombing of Iraq throughout his Presidency (1993-2001) and the siege conditions of the embargo, with an average of six thousand a month dying of “embargo related causes”, paid tribute to Mandela as: “a champion for human dignity and freedom, for peace and reconciliation ... a man of uncommon grace and compassion, for whom abandoning bitterness and embracing adversaries was ... a way of life. All of us are living in a better world because of the life that Madiba lived.” Tell that to America’s victims.

In the hypocrisy stakes, Prime Minister David Cameron can compete with the best. He said:
“A great light has gone out in the world. Nelson Mandela was a towering figure in our time; a legend in life and now in death – a true global hero.
... Meeting him was one of the great honours of my life.
On Twitter he reiterated: “A great light has gone out in the world. Nelson Mandela was a hero of our time.” The flag on Downing Street was to hang at half mast, to which a follower replied: “Preferably by no-one who was in the Young Conservatives at a time they wanted him hanged, or those who broke sanctions, eh?”
Another responded: “The Tories wanted to hang Mandela.You utter hypocrite.”
The two tweeters clearly knew their history. In 2009, when Cameron was pitching to become Prime Minister, it came to light that in 1989, when Mandela was still in prison, David Cameron, then a: “rising star of the Conservative Research Department ... accepted an all expenses paid trip to apartheid South Africa ... funded by a firm that lobbied against the imposition of sanctions on the apartheid regime.”
Asked if Cameron: “wrote a memo or had to report back to the office about his trip, Alistair Cooke (his then boss at Conservative Central Office) said it was ‘simply a jolly’, adding: ‘It was all terribly relaxed, just a little treat, a perk of the job ... ‘ “
Former Cabinet Minister Peter Hain commented of the trip:

“This just exposes his hypocrisy because he has tried to present himself as a progressive Conservative, but just on the eve of the apartheid downfall, and Nelson Mandela’s release from prison, when negotiations were taking place about a transfer of power, here he was being wined and dined on a sanctions-busting visit.
“This is the real Conservative Party ... his colleagues who used to wear ‘Hang Nelson Mandela’ badges at university are now sitting on the benches around him. Their leader at the time Margaret Thatcher described Mandela as a terrorist.” (ii)
In the book of condolences opened at South Africa House, five minutes walk from his Downing Street residence, Cameron, who has voted for, or enjoined all the onslaughts or threatened ones referred to above, wrote:
“ ... your generosity, compassion and profound sense of forgiveness have given us all lessons to learn and live by.
He ended his message with: “Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the children of God.” Hopefully your lower jaw is still attached to your face, dear reader. If so, hang on to it, worse
is to come.
The farcically titled Middle East Peace Envoy, former Prime Minister Tony Blair (think “dodgy dossiers” “forty five minutes” to destruction, illegal invasion, Iraq’s ruins and ongoing carnage, heartbreak, after over a decade) stated:
“Through his leadership, he guided the world into a new era of politics in which black and white, developing and developed, north and south ... stood for the first time together on equal terms.
“Through his dignity, grace and the quality of his forgiveness, he made racism everywhere not just immoral but stupid; something not only to be disagreed with, but to be despised. In its place he put the inalienable right of all humankind to be free and to be equal.
“I worked with him closely ...“ (iii) said the man whose desire for “humankind to be free and equal” (tell that to the Iraqis) now includes demolishing Syria and possibly Iran.
As ever, it seems with Blair, the memories of others are a little different:
“Nelson Mandela felt so betrayed by Blair’s decision to join the US-led invasion of Iraq that he launched a fiery tirade against him in a phone call to a cabinet minister, it emerged.
“Peter Hain who (knew) the ex-South African President well, said Mandela was ‘breathing fire’ down the line in protest at the 2003 military action.
“The trenchant criticisms were made in a formal call to the Minister’s office, not in a private capacity, and Blair was informed of what had been said, Hain added.
‘I had never heard Nelson Mandela so angry and frustrated.” (iv)
On the BBC’s flagship morning news programme “Today” former Prime Minister “Iraq is a better place, I’d do it again” Blair, said of Nelson Mandela:
“ ... he came to represent something quite inspirational for the future of the world and for peace and reconciliation in the 21st century.”
Comment is left to former BBC employee, Elizabeth Morley, with peerless knowledge of Middle East politics, who takes no prisoners:
“Dear Today Complaints,
“How could you? Your almost ten minute long interview with the war criminal Tony Blair was the antithesis to all the tributes to the great man. I cannot even bring myself to put the two names in the same sentence. How could you?
“Blair has the blood of millions of Iraqis on his hands. Blair has declared himself willing to do the same to Iranians. How many countries did Mandela bomb? Blair condones apartheid in Israel. Blair turns a blind eye to white supremacists massacring Palestinians. And you insult us by making us listen to him while our hearts and minds are focussed on Mandela.
How could you?” (Reproduced with permission.)
As the avalanche of hypocrisy cascades across the globe from shameless Western politicians, Archbishop Desmond Tutu reflected in two lines the thoughts in the hearts of the true mourners:
“We are relieved that his suffering is over, but our relief is drowned by our grief. May he rest in peace and rise in glory.”
“I am fundamentally an optimist. Whether that comes from nature or nurture, I cannot say. Part of being optimistic is keeping one's head pointed toward the sun, one's feet moving forward. There were many dark moments when my faith in humanity was sorely tested, but I would not and could not give myself up to despair. That way lays defeat and death.”
- Nelson Mandela, Long Walk to Freedom: Autobiography of Nelson Mandela 
Amazing Nelson Mandela Sculpture
It consists of 50 ten metre high laser cut steel plates set into the landscape, representing the 50 year anniversary of when and where Nelson Mandela was captured and arrested, on
August 6, 1962 prior to his 27 years of incarceration.
Standing at a particular point the columns come into focus and the image of Nelson Mandela can be seen.
The sculptor is Marco Cianfanelli, of Johannesburg , who studied Fine Art at Wits.
Robert Mugabe Blasts ‘Coward’ Nelson Mandela
The Daily Currant
Aug 05, 2013
Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe blasted Nelson Mandela as a "coward" and "idiot" during a rally today to celebrate Mugabe's record seventh term in office following his victory in the country's disputed elections last week.
In one of his trademark fiery speeches, the 89-year-old Mugabe -- who has led the southern African country since 1980 -- claimed that he should be hailed as an African hero instead of Mandela, the anti-apartheid icon and former president of neighboring South Africa.
"My huge victory in these elections prove I am the greatest leader in the history of Africa," Mugabe told supporters in Zimbabwe's capital, Harare. "I have spent my whole life fighting for the Zimbabwean people and they continue to elect me."
Mugabe tightened his iron grip on power in last week's elections after he received 61 percent of the vote while his ZANU-PF party won a two-thirds majority in parliament, though there are allegations of widespread fraud and violence against the opposition.
"I am the greatest African who has ever lived," Mugabe said. "The world should love me more than the idiot Nelson Mandela. F**k Nelson Mandela. As I waged war against colonialism, that coward sat on his ass in prison for 27 years. He's a coward.
"I have been leader for 33 years. Mandela was president for five years. What kind of idiot gives up political power? Great leaders like me know how to stay in power.
"While Mandela sits comfortably in a hospital, I stand before you fit and healthy, ready to lead this country and the Zimbabwean people for at least another 25 years," Mugabe added, referring to the 95-year-old Mandela's ongoing treatment for a lung condition.
Mugabe also mocked South Africa's multicultural "rainbow nation" in his speech, claiming that Mandela didn't care about the interests of black Africans.
"There is only one color allowed in Zimbabwe, and it is black," he said. "I banned the color white in my country. Nelson Mandela told all the white people to stay in his ridiculous rainbow nation. He should have thrown all of the whites and homosexuals out of his country like I did. South Africa would be so much better off."
The Lord of Misrule
Mandela served as South Africa's president from 1994 to 1999 and is highly regarded at home and worldwide for his role in ending apartheid and becoming the country's first democratically elected leader.
Similar to Mandela, Mugabe played a pivotal role in the struggle for black-majority rule against the white minority-controlled Rhodesia, which became Zimbabwe.
In recent years, however, Mugabe and his government have plunged the country into diplomatic and economic isolation due to corruption, authoritarian rule, political violence and human rights abuses. Mugabe drew international condemnation in particular over his land redistribution policies, in which prosperous commercial farmers were chased off their land by violent mobs.
South Africa, which borders Zimbabwe, has pursued a policy of silent diplomacy with Mugabe, appeasing him in public while supposedly criticizing him in private.
South Africa's President Jacob Zuma, who congratulated Mugabe on his presidential victory, said he would review Mugabe's remarks before making an official statement.
The Nelson Mandela Drama – a Gentle Reminder About the History of Apartheid
Added by Laura Oneale on July 6, 2013.
South Africa – The death of Nelson Mandela, the drama and deceitful acts by some members of the Mandela family and the government, strung across the media over the past month shows the insolence of a legacy left behind. Sometimes we need a gentle reminder of history and how apartheid and the Mandela legacy began. Perhaps going back in time can help this country heal its wounds and move forward into a brighter future.
Often, people judge apartheid in the most negative light and condemn the dreaded system for the failures of South African society. People remember the struggle for freedom and embrace Nelson Mandela for his bravery. Yet sooner than later, we must learn to leave the past behind and move forward into a democratic legacy – with lessons learned.
While under the leadership of Jannie Smuts, segregation between different races existed, a method practiced worldwide. In general, Smuts portrayed a patronizing view of the different races and was not alone in these views. A close confident of Gandhi would consider this issue. During March 1908, Gandhi wrote, “We believe as much in the purity of race as we think they do. We believe also that the white race in South Africa should be the predominating race.
Admittedly, segregation existed under his rule, and yet it was not uncommon in the rural and farming communities, to see different colored children schooling or playing together. The young ones did not allow color to restrict their free spirits.
During his rule, there existed the unsavory elements under the current system who wanted more and during 1948 general elections, the National party gained control, and Jannie Smuts was ousted. The new governing body, the National Party of South Africa introduced apartheid to the South Africa system. Apartheid only began festering its nastiness from 1948 until the collapse in 1994.
We seem to forget that it was not only the ANC and other banned political parties that protested against the apartheid system. From the beginning of the apartheid era, the opposition parties ‘The United Party” and the ‘Democratic Party’ were determined contestants in all the following elections. It was their policy to allow all South Africans freedom and dignity.
The current ruling party of South Africa, the ANC, claims the victory for ending the apartheid system. We seem to forget that the opposition parties during that time also fought to destroy apartheid.
Today in South Africa we remain a democratic country, but still, a third world country with many lessons to be learned. We have under the ANC government gained little and lost a lot. Every time a problem arises, the blame after all these years is called apartheid. The hatred and racist element in the nation is strong and a clash of different cultures or xenophobia should not be forgotten.
It is the recognition and words of the late Nelson Mandela that stems peace into people’s hearts daily. The ruling government must remember the Mandela legacy and revert to becoming a trustworthy one and then, perhaps we will remember our lessons of the past.
The Nelson Mandela drama is a gentle reminder about the history of apartheid. It was not just one person that made all the difference. We will remember Mandela and his wisdom and always agree that he walked the first steps into freedom after 44 years of torture, not only for black people but also for all the people of South Africa. We need to unleash the shackles of the past and move into the future with dignity.
South Africa must move forward with the most valuable legacy from Nelson Mandela, education. We can look back at his term as president and remember how he loved the young ones, and often quoted how essential education was. His legacy is now been tarnished by all the drama and deceit surrounding his last days on earth.
We as a united country, should rise to support the furtherance of educating our people and we should not support the furtherance of keeping our people in the dark. We need a gentle reminder from history that can help all races move forward. Put plainly, we need to stop blaming apartheid for the mistakes of today and focus on moving forward.
Written by Laura Oneale
The Legacy of Nelson Mandela: A Dissenting Opinion
Global Research, December 06, 2013
Offering a dissenting opinion at this moment of a general outpouring of grief at Nelson Mandela’s death is not likely to court popularity. It is also likely to be misunderstood.
So let me start by recognising Mandela’s huge achievement in helping to bring down South African apartheid, and make clear my enormous respect for the great personal sacrifices he made, including spending so many years caged up for his part in the struggle to liberate his people. These are things impossible to forget or ignore when assessing someone’s life.
Nonetheless, it is important to pause during the widespread acclamation of his legacy, mostly by people who have never demonstrated a fraction of his integrity, to consider a lesson that most observers want to overlook. Perhaps the best way to make my point is to highlight a mock memo written in 2001 by Arjan el-Fassed, from Nelson Mandela to the NYT’s columnist Thomas Friedman. It is a wonderful, humane denunciation of Friedman’s hypocrisy and a demand for justice for the Palestinians that Mandela should have written. []
Soon afterwards, the memo spread online, stripped of el-Fassed’s closing byline. Many people, including a few senior journalists, assumed it was written by Mandela and published it as such. It seemed they wanted to believe that Mandela had written something as morally clear-sighted as this about another apartheid system, an Israeli one that is at least the equal of that imposed for decades on black South Africans. However, the reality is that it was not written by Mandela, and his staff even went so far as to threaten legal action against the author. Mandela spent most his adult life treated as a “terrorist”.
There was a price to be paid for his long walk to freedom, and the end of South Africa’s system of racial apartheid. Mandela was rehabilitated into an “elder statesman” in return for South Africa being rapidly transformed into an outpost of neoliberalism, prioritising the kind of economic apartheid most of us in the west are getting a strong dose of now. In my view, Mandela suffered a double tragedy in his post-prison years. First, he was reinvented as a bloodless icon, one that other leaders could appropriate to legitimise their own claims, as the figureheads of the “democratic west”, to integrity and moral superiority. After finally being allowed to join the western “club”, he could be regularly paraded as proof of the club’s democratic credentials and its ethical sensibility.
Second, and even more tragically, this very status as icon became a trap in which he was required to act the “responsible” elder statesman, careful in what he said and which causes he was seen to espouse. He was forced to become a kind of Princess Diana, someone we could be allowed to love because he rarely said anything too threatening to the interests of the corporate elite who run the planet. It is an indication of what Mandela was up against that the man who fought so hard and long against a brutal apartheid regime was so completely defeated when he took power in South Africa.
That was because he was no longer struggling against a rogue regime but against the existing order, a global corporate system of power that he had no hope of challenging alone. It is for that reason, rather simply to be contrarian, that I raise these failings. Or rather, they were not Mandela’s failings, but ours. Because, as I suspect Mandela realised only too well, one cannot lead a revolution when there are no followers. For too long we have slumbered through the theft and pillage of our planet and the erosion of our democratic rights, preferring to wake only for the release of the next iPad or smart phone. The very outpouring of grief from our leaders for Mandela’s loss helps to feed our slumber.
Our willingness to suspend our anger this week, to listen respectfully to those watery-eyed leaders who forced Mandela to reform from a fighter into a notable, keeps us in our slumber.
Next week there will be another reason not to struggle for our rights and our grandchildren’s rights to a decent life and a sustainable planet. There will always be a reason to worship at the feet of those who have no real power but are there to distract us from what truly matters. No one, not even a Mandela, can change things by him or herself. There are no Messiahs on their way, but there are many false gods designed to keep us pacified, divided and weak.
Jonathan Cook won the Martha Gellhorn Special Prize for Journalism. His latest books are “Israel and the Clash of Civilisations: Iraq, Iran and the Plan to Remake the Middle East” (Pluto Press) and “Disappearing Palestine: Israel’s Experiments in Human Despair” (Zed Books). His website is

U.S. Glorifies Nelson Mandela In Death. But Treated Him as a Terrorist While Alive
Global Research, December 06, 2013
CIA Central In Mandela’s Arrest … Labelled Him a Terrorist Until 2008
Everyone from President Obama to the mainstream news is lionizing Nelson Mandela.
But the New York Times reported in 1990:
The Central Intelligence Agency played an important role in the arrest in 1962 of Nelson Mandela, the African National Congress leader who was jailed for nearly 28 years before his release four months ago, a news report says.
The intelligence service, using an agent inside the African National Congress, provided South African security officials with precise information about Mr. Mandela’s activities that enabled the police to arrest him, said the account by the Cox News Service.
Newsweek reported in February that the agency was believed to have been involved.
At the time of Mr. Mandela’s arrest in August 1962, the C.I.A. devoted more resources to penetrating the activities of nationalist groups like the African National Congress than did South Africa’s then-fledgling security service.
A retired South African intelligence official, Gerard Ludi, was quoted in the report as saying that at the time of Mr. Mandela’s capture, the C.I.A. had put an undercover agent into the inner circle of the African National Congress group in Durban.
Indeed, Nelson Mandela was only removed from the U.S. “terrorist” list in 2008.
Mandela was highly critical of U.S. foreign policy. And anyone – even U.S. citizens – critical of U.S. policy may be labelled a bad guy.
Crocodile Tears: It was the CIA that helped jail Nelson Mandela
Crocodile Tears to mask US imperialism's role as the enemy of African liberation
Global Research, December 06, 2013
Liberation 15 July 2013
This article was published in July 2013
Today is Nelson Mandela’s 95th birthday, but forget the crocodile tears from the U.S. government about Mandela’s poor health. Imperialist diplomacy with all of its sugar-coated phrases is nothing more than a form of historical perjury.
Nelson Mandela’s arrest in 1962, which led to 18 of his 27 years of imprisonment on Robbins Island, was based on the work of the CIA. The CIA and National Security Agency worked as partners with the racist, apartheid regime’s vicious military and intelligence services.
Mandela was a leader of the African National Congress (ANC) that organized civil resistance and an armed struggle against South Africa’s white racist apartheid regime. The United States and the other western capitalist governments supported the racist, fascist apartheid regime.
Mandela was labeled a terrorist by the United States. So was the entire ANC. Even as late as 2008 the U.S. State Department had to pass special waivers so that Mandela or any ANC leader could visit the United States because he and the ANC were still on the “terrorist watch list.”
The ANC’s struggle for Black majority rule and the liquidation of apartheid received critical support from Cuba, the Soviet Union and other socialist countries. The ANC had an active alliance with South African Communist Party in the struggle for Black majority rule.
Even after the fall of the apartheid government ANC members applying for visas to the USA were flagged for questioning and forced to ask for waivers to enter the country. Former ANC chairman Tokyo Sexwale was denied a visa in 2002
In an act of shameless duplicity, the various leaders of the U.S. imperialist government have pretended that they were always opposed to Mandela’s imprisonment.
In 2007, Barbara Masekela, South Africa’s ambassador to the United States until the year prior was denied a visa to visit a dying cousin living in the United States.

U.S. Imperialism was the enemy of African Liberation

The CIA and NSA spy services—with the full collaboration of such transnational corporations at IBM, Kodak and many others—worked at all levels and for decades for apartheid and against the African National Congress activists who were routinely murdered, tortured and sentenced to life terms in the hell holes of South Africa.
The ANC was labeled and treated as a terrorist organization and pro-communist by the CIA and successive U.S. administrations, Democratic and Republican alike. Congress, too, was an enthusiastic cheerleader for this vile partnership with the planet’s most disgustingly racist regime.
The House of Representatives only voted to call for Nelson Mandela’s release from prison in 1986 when it was clear that the fascist apartheid regime’s days were numbered, leading the United States and Britain to abruptly shift course and broker a negotiated end to the white supremacist system. A mass worldwide anti-apartheid movement had completely isolated South Africa. Dick Cheney voted against the House resolution in 1986, pointing out that the U.S. government was still retaining the ANC on the official U.S. “terrorist list.”
The U.S. and Britain knew the end had finally come for the usefulness of the apartheid government when its seemingly invincible military was decisively defeated by the Angolan army and thousands of Cuban volunteers in the historic battle of Cuito Canavale.
As Mandela said, “When Africa called, Cuba answered.”

Shameless duplicity

In an act of shameless duplicity, once Mandela was released from prison, each successive U.S. administration has pretended that the United States was always opposed to Mandela’s imprisonment and stood with him against apartheid.
After getting out of prison, Mandela came to the United States to meet President George H.W. Bush on June 25, 1990. He was being touted as a hero and a champion in the fight against racism. The U.S. government, working through propagandists in the corporate-owned media, tried to instill a society-wide case of amnesia about the fact that they were the defenders of apartheid and directly responsible for Mandela’s imprisonment.
But one reporter had the gall to ask an unscripted question.
Bush’s press secretary, Marlin Fitzwater, was asked in the days before the June 25 meeting with Bush whether the president would apologize to Mandela for the U.S. role in his arrest.
Fitzwater was angry and caught off guard. He said, “I just don’t like it when people question our motives on blacks or on Mandela because of an incident that happened 20 years ago in another administration.”
Today, on Mandela’s 95th birthday and when the U.S. government celebrates Mandela, will any of the corporate media expose the bloody role of the CIA, NSA and other U.S. intelligence services in their war against the African liberation movements?
Nelson Mandela is a beacon for the oppressed. He is a hero and he will be remembered as such. Not true for the CIA and NSA which worked as the spy service for the racist, apartheid regime as it hunted down and captured Mandela and captured or killed his comrades.
“Difficulties break some men but make others.” - Nelson Mandela

A few of the many stamps of Nelson Mandela
Nelson Mandela Currency
Mandela’s statues around the world
Paballo Lephaka
Saturday 7 December 2013 20:07
The bronzed Nelson Mandela statue in the Nelson Mandela Square was unveiled on the centre’s 10 year anniversary in March 2003.
This is a three metre high sculpture created by Cape Town artist Jean Doyle, and is a replica of the sculpture outside the gates of Drakenstein Correctional Centre where Mandela was released after 27 years in prison.
The three-metre high statue of Nelson Mandela is unveiled outside South Africa’s newly renovated embassy in Washington. Reuters

Designer Marco Cianfanelli says that the front of the sculpture is a portrait of Mandela and has vertical bars which represent his imprisonment.
The Mandela monument in Howick in KwaZulu-Natal. Thembinkosi Dwayisa
This majestic bust was erected by the Greater London Council and unveiled by Oliver Reginald Tambo on 28 October 1985.
In 2004, Mayor of London Ken Livingstone publicly pledged his support for a statue of Nelson Mandela for Trafalgar Square at a celebration in the square of the 10th anniversary of democracy in South Africa.

The eight-metre high bronze statue on Naval Hill was donated by Bloemfontein businessman Freddie Kenney and is regarded as the largest of all statues of the former president.
A bust of former South African president Nelson Mandela outside Royal Festival Hall in London. Chris Helgren
The statue of Nelson Mandela in Parliament Square in London, seen with Big Ben in the background at sunrise on Saturday morning. Reuters
Visitors view a statue of Nelson Mandela which overlooks the city of Bloemfontein, the birthplace of the ANC. Christopher Furlong
“As I walked out the door toward the gate that would lead to my freedom, I knew if I didn't leave my bitterness and hatred behind, I'd still be in prison.”
― Nelson Mandela
Nelson Mandela Day - 18 July
By Info | July 13, 2010
“The world remains beset by so much human suffering, poverty and deprivation. It is in your hands … to make of our world … a better one for all.” - Nelson Mandela, 2008
The first Nelson Mandela Day will be held on Sunday 18 July as a call to action for individuals – for people everywhere – to take responsibility for changing the world into a better place, one small step at a time, just as Mr Mandela did for more than 67 years.
It is an opportunity for people to remember South and southern Africa and the struggles the region has overcome and the challenges it still faces. On Mandela Day people are being asked to commit to taking an action that will help improve the world for all.
ACTSA is joining the British Museum to mark the special day, where organisations and performers will join to celebrate South African culture and the legacy of Nelson Mandela.
Please come down to visit us on our stall from 11:00 – 16:00. We’ll be running a quiz where you can win ACTSA goodies and will have lots of information on how you can volunteer for ACTSA to support southern Africa.
Communist Mandela Chose to Side With Despots, Murders Like Castro, Arafat, and Ghadafi
December 7, 2013
Everyone has turned to star-struck mush on the death of former South African President Nelson Mandela, but it should be remembered that he chose to side with murderers, despots, and communists when he emerged from prison in the 1980s. He also headed up a political party guilty of murder and terrorism.
Nelson Mandela, Winnie Mandela and Jow Slovo sing Nksoi Sikelele I’afrika in Soweto. The Communist Party holds its first public meeting in South Africa in 1990, after being banned for decades.
Mandela was the head of the African National Congress Party (ANC) a party guilty of decades of murder, terrorism, and violence. In fact, South African President P.W. Botha gave Mandela the opportunity to walk out of jail for free if he just renounced the ANC’s terrorism. He always refused to renounce terrorism.
But beyond the crimes he was accused of before he became “the” Mandela that everyone so gauzily remembers, he had a long list of crimes accredited to him. At the bottom of the page you can see a list of the charges leveled against him.

The truth is, Nelson Mandela was the head of UmKhonto we Sizwe, (MK), the terrorist wing of the ANC and South African Communist Party. He had pleaded guilty to 156 acts of public violence including mobilizing terrorist bombing campaigns, which planted bombs in public places, including the Johannesburg railway station. Many innocent people, including women and children, were killed by Nelson Mandela’s MK terrorists–murderers he never, ever renounced.
But even after he walked out of prison and became the elected president of South Africa, Mandela chose to side with some of the worst monsters of the 20th century.
Nelson Mandela was an avowed Communist and he sided with Cuban murderer and dictator Fidel Castro, he sided with the USSR, he sided with Mumar Ghadafi and the terrorist and so-called “Palestinian” Yasser Arafat.
And, as Breitbart’s Joel Pollak notes, the Old Media establishment is trying to sue Mandela’s death as yet another excuse to attack conservatives in general and Ronald Reagan in particular.
As Pollak says,

More important, the left is ignoring the context in which conservatives were skeptical of Mandela and the ANC–namely, the fact that they had aligned themselves with the Soviet Union, as well as some of the most villainous figures of the time, including Fidel Castro, Yasser Arafat, and Muammar Ghadafi. For conservatives, the fight against Soviet communism was the overriding strategic concern, and Mandela had chosen the wrong side.

That does not mean Mandela ought to be saddled with all the evils of the Soviet empire. He kept communism at arm’s length and tried to argue that his partnership with the USSR was a means to an end, much like America’s own alliance with Stalin during WWII had been a strategic move, not necessarily a moral endorsement. Yet it is the most challenging part of Mandela’s otherwise inspiring legacy, and one that cannot be erased from history.

Pollak also astutely points out that South Africa only started improving the little bit it did under Mandela only after the Soviet Union collapsed and international communism fell apart as a Cold War threat.
So, let’s have some perspective, shall we?
The Charges Against Nelson Mandela:
One count under the South African Suppression of Communism Act No. 44 of 1950, charging that the accused committed acts calculated to further the achievement of the objective of communism;
Nelson Mandela
One count of contravening the South African Criminal Law Act (1953), which prohibits any person from soliciting or receiving any money or articles for the purpose of achieving organized defiance of laws and country; and
Two counts of sabotage, committing or aiding or procuring the commission of the following acts:
1) The further recruitment of persons for instruction and training, both within and outside the Republic of South Africa, in:
(a) the preparation, manufacture and use of explosives—for the purpose of committing acts of violence and destruction in the aforesaid Republic, (the preparation and manufacture of explosives, according to evidence submitted, included 210,000 hand grenades, 48,000 anti-personnel mines, 1,500 time devices, 144 tons of ammonium nitrate, 21.6 tons of aluminum powder and a ton of black powder);
(b) the art of warfare, including guerrilla warfare, and military training generally for the purpose in the aforesaid Republic;
Nelson Mandela
(ii) Further acts of violence and destruction, (this includes 193 counts of terrorism committed between 1961 and 1963);
(iii) Acts of guerrilla warfare in the aforesaid Republic;
(iv) Acts of assistance to military units of foreign countries when involving the aforesaid Republic;
(v) Acts of participation in a violent revolution in the aforesaid Republic, whereby the accused, injured, damaged, destroyed, rendered useless or unserviceable, put out of action, obstructed, with or endangered.
Nelson Mandela: Communist, terrorist, racist... hero
By John Thomas Didymus
Dec 06, 2013
While most of the world mourns the death of Nelson Mandela [Unlink], the former leader of the African National Congress (ANC) and first president of post-apartheid South Africa, the right-wing media and blogosphere are jubilating at the death of yet another hated "communist" and anti-white "terrorist."
In an article representative of the right-wing perspective, titled "Don't Mourn Mandela," WND's Joseph Farrah argues to applause from his conservative audience:
He [Mandela] was a committed member of the South African Communist Party. He was a leader of the revolutionary African National Congress, which he helped to radicalize into an organization sworn to armed, violent attacks. He wasn’t someone fighting for racial equality. He was the leader of a violent, Communist revolution that has nearly succeeded in all of its grisly horror.
In conservative circles, “communist" is the readymade label you pin on a man you wish to portray as the epitome of evil. Among those still steeped in the ideological prejudices of the 20th century Cold War, the word "communism" contrasts sharply with the Godonomics of capitalism as a synonym for "godless evil" supposedly exemplified in the mass-murdering careers of dictators such as Russia's Josef Stalin and China's Chairman Mao Zedong [Unlink].
Typical comments from the right wing accusing Mandela of the “crime” of communism:
"[Mandela] was a criminal Marxist Terrorist..."
"... another communist trash. May his name and memory be obliterated."
A sample of conservative responses to news of Mandela's death in the Twittersphere pointing out his "terrorist" past:
“It's amazing we forget he was a terrorist."
"... biographical articles about Mandela are leaving out his terrorist actions pre-1991."
"Terrorist" is another label you deploy with special effect in reference to people and groups guilty of acts of politically-motivated violence in which civilians were among the victims, with the important proviso that the violence was not perpetrated by you, your government and its allies.
In the context of this restricted definition, the May 1983 Church Street bombing by the Mandela's Umkhonto we Sizwe, the military wing of ANC, in which 19 people were killed and 217 injured, was a terrorist act by a terrorist organization, but the Sharpeville massacre perpetrated by apartheid regime in which 69 civilians, including eight women and 10 children, were killed and 180 injured, although regrettable, was not an act of terrorism and the apartheid regime was not terrorist.
From the perspective of one-sided definition which defines terrorism exclusively as the acts of our opponents in a mutual orgy of violence came statements by the friends of the apartheid regime denouncing the ANC as a terrorist organization.
One of the best friends of South Africa's apartheid regime, UK Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher [Unlink], condemned the ANC as a "typical terrorist organization," adding, "Anyone who thinks it is going to run the government in South Africa is living in cloud-cuckoo land."
Yet, throughout history people have been forced to take up arms against oppressors and aggressors who by their acts foreclosed nonviolent means of resolving differences and effecting change.
The British were forced to take up arms against the Nazis, and would disdain anyone who called them terrorists in spite of the well documented acts of systematic terror unleashed by the "gallant" men of the British Royal Air Force, such as in Dresden, where an estimated 25,000 were killed in one of history's most intense aerial bombing campaigns targeted at noncombatant populations.
The Americans were also forced to take up arms against the Japanese expansionist threat, and would similarly disdain anyone who called them terrorists in spite of having committed what probably ranks as history's most horrendous single act of terrorist violence -- the incineration of tens of thousands of unarmed civilians in Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
Likewise did Mandela and his ANC colleagues take up arms against the oppressive apartheid regime; and likewise would they disdain the label terrorist for daring to fight for freedom against a regime that blocked all means of peaceful change in South Africa.
It was an American president, John F. Kennedy [Unlink], who once remarked, "Those who make peaceful change impossible make violent revolution inevitable."
Until we learn to understand that those who make peaceful change impossible are just as guilty of "terrorism" as those who take up arms to effect change by violent means, we will continue indulging in the pattern of hypocritical moralizing that suggests that "nice" people don't take up arms to fight against their oppressors, or that there have been "nice" wars in history in which civilians were not victims.
I have devoted only a few lines to defending Mandela against charges of the "crime" of communism because unlike those who were raised from the cradle to equate the word "communist" with evil, nothing in my background and ideological upbringing prepares me to react to a "communist" in any manner different than I would a "capitalist."
In my worldview, capitalists and communists are different historical manifestations with roots firmly embedded in the same undifferentiated glob of cosmic evil.
Probably most unfathomable from my perspective is the charge that Mandela was racist because he fought against racists.
CNN quotes accusations of racism against Mandela:
"How convenient that we choose to ignore that he once sang, 'Kill white people.'"
"If apartheid was racist toward blacks, Mandela was equally racist towards whites."
The special application of the logic of "reverse racism" here is that only racist blacks call out white racists or take up arms to fight against white oppressors.
I'm sorry, but I can't understand this. Yet it seems to be the consensus among right-wingers who celebrate their nation's armed struggle against British oppressors to gain the independence they deserved.
But ultimately, what conservative charges against Mandela miss is that what the world celebrates is not his “communist,” “terrorist” or “racist” past, but the fact that after his release from prison, he eschewed bitterness and the spirit of revenge, and sought reconciliation with former enemies.
John Thomas Didymus is based in Lagos, Lagos, Nigeria, and is an Anchor for Allvoices.

Now that Madiba is Dead…: Remember to Remember that Icons created by Oppressors will Never Liberate the People
By Ezili Dantò
Global Research, December 07, 2013

Now that Madiba is dead…

beware the icon makers
they will say he was great
they will laud his calls for peace
they will wring their hands and cry
speaking only of the man
disregarding the people
explaining away the movement
pretending the revolution was won
they will deny their guilt
denying their privilege
obscuring his birth in the pains and the blood of his people
denying the capital crimes
of neoliberal friends of apartheid still alive
now that Mandela is dead
they will say no one else will come
they will wink that we still organize
they will pretend that de Klerk was his friend
they will ignore the birth pangs in Jo’burg today
pretending to honor him with deceitful silence
in the face of Capetown shanties and Manenburg misery
and Durban oppression
while former murderers still prey
and bougie negros still play
while lying bishops still pray
and corporations still rape
and the people in South Africa still die
like people across the Global South
as the Revolution dies as Madiba’s children live in squalor
as the wine growers awake in shacks
as the homeless sleep beneath the floors of stores—after hours
when they will not be seen while they are still being sold

beware the speakers of phrases that lie
they will disremember liberation struggles
that have yet to be won
they will pretend that Mandela belonged to them
denying the people to whom he belonged

remember to remember Chris Hani
remember to remember Robben Island
remember to remember the South African Charter
remember to remember that icons created by oppressors
will never liberate the people
remember to remember that they are still killing Martin
remember to remember that they are still killing Malcolm
remember to remember that Assata still lives
remember to remember that our liberation will be sold to us for profits
unless we work for it with our minds and our actions
then we will remember Mandela as he was
for he will live inside us
and the lies will no longer deceive
because the struggle will continue
and the last will be first at last

From M Thandabantu Iverson,
Forwarded by Ezili’s Haitian Lawyers Leadership Network

How the Western Media Distorts the Historical Legacy of Nelson Mandela
Global Research, July 01, 2013
There’s anger amidst the apprehension in South Africa as the numbers of “journalists” on the Mandela deathwatch grows. Members of his family have about had it, comparing what even the New York Times called a “media swarm” to African vultures that wait to pounce on the carcasses of dead animals.
President Obama was soon in South Africa, carrying a message that he hyped as one of “profound gratitude” to Nelson Mandela. The Times reported,
“Mr. Obama said the main message he intended to deliver to Mr. Mandela, “if not directly to him but to his family, is simply our profound gratitude for his leadership all these years and that the thoughts and prayers of the American people are with him, and his family, and his country.”

It doesn’t seem as if the South Africa’s grieving for their former president’s imminent demise are too impressed with Obama seeking the spotlight. Some groups including top unions protested his receiving an honorary degree from a university in Johannesburg.
Interestingly, NBC with its team buttressed by former South African correspondent Charlayne Hunter-Gault did not bother to cover the protest but relied on Reuters reporting “nearly 1,000 trade unionists, Muslim activists, South African Communist Party members and others marched to the U.S. Embassy where they burned a U.S. flag, calling Obama’s foreign policy “arrogant and oppressive.”
”We had expectations of America’s first black president. Knowing Africa’s history, we expected more,” Khomotso Makola, a 19-year-old law student, told Reuters. He said Obama was a “disappointment, I think Mandela too would be disappointed and feel let down.”

South African critics of Obama have focused in particular on his support for U.S. drone strikes overseas, which they say have killed hundreds of innocent civilians, and his failure to deliver on a pledge to close the U.S. military detention center at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba housing terrorism suspects.” (Oddly, The South African police detained a local cameraman who used his own drone to photograph the hospital from above. He was stopped for “security” reasons.)
For symbolic reasons, as well as because of his global popularity, Nelson Mandela seems to be of special interest to the American media with the networks, nominally in an austerity mode, busting their budgets to have a dominant presence.
South African skeptic Rian Malan writes in the Spectator, “Every time Mandela goes into hospital, large numbers of Americans (up to 50) are flown here to take up their positions, and the South African network is similarly activated. Colin, (A cameraman who works for a US network) for instance, travels to Johannesburg, hires a car and checks into a hotel, all on the network’s ticket. Since last December, he’s probably spent close to 30 days (at $2000 a day, expenses included) cooling his heels at various poolsides. And he has yet to shoot a single frame.
As Colin says, this could be the worst disaster in American media history, inter alia because all these delays are destroying the story. When the old man finally dies, a lot of punters are going to yawn and say, Mandela died? Didn’t that already happen a year ago?”
Hostility to the this media is satirized in an open letter by Richard Poplak from the foreign media to South Africa that appears in The Daily Maverick:
“As you may have noted, we’re back! It’s been four long months since the Oscar Pistorius bail hearing thing, and just as we were forgetting just how crappy the Internet connections are in Johannestoria, the Mandela story breaks.
We feel that it is vital locals understand just how big a deal this is for us. In the real world—far away from your sleepy backwater—news works on a 24-hour cycle. That single shot of a hospital with people occasionally going into and out of the front door, while a reporter describes exactly what is happening—at length and in detail? That’s our bread and butter. It’s what we do.
And you need to get out of the way while we do it.”Why all the fanatical interest? The US media loves larger than life personalities, often creating them when they don’t exist. Mandela has assumed the heroic mantle for them of Martin Luther King Jr. whose memory enjoys iconic status even as his achievements like Voting Rights Act was just picked apart by right-wing judicial buzzards in black robes. (Kings image was also sanitized with his international outlook often muzzled).

It wasn’t always like this. For many years, The US media treated Mandela as a communist and terrorist, respecting South African censorship laws that kept his image secret. Reports about the CIA’s role in capturing him were few and far between. Ditto for evidence of US spying documented in cables released by Wikileaks.
In the Reagan years, his law partner Oliver Tambo, then the leader of the ANC while he was in prison, was barred from coming to the US and then, when he did, meeting with top officials. Later, Dick Cheney refused to support a Congressional call for his release from jail.
In 1988, I, among other TV producers, launched the TV series South Africa Now to cover the unrest the networks were largely ignoring as stories shot by US crews ended up on “the shelf,” not on the air.
A 1988 concert to free Mandela was shown by the Fox Network as a “freedom fest” with artists told not to mention his name, less they “politicize” all the fun. When he was released in 2000, a jammed all-star celebration at London’s WembleyStadiumwas shown everywhere in the world, except by the American networks.
Once he adopted reconciliation as his principal political tenet and dropped demands for nationalization anchored in the ANC’s “Freedom Charter,” his image in the US was quickly rehabilitated. He was elevated into a symbolic hero for all praised by the people and the global elite alike. Little mention was made of his role as the creator of an Armed Struggle, and its Commander in Chief,
US networks also did not cover the role played by the US dominated IMF and World Bank in steering the economy in a market -oriented neo-liberal direction, assuring the new government could not erase deep inequality and massive poverty and that the whites would retain privleges.
The American press shaped how Mandela was portrayed in the US. The lawyer and anti-nuclear campaigner, Alice Slater, tells a story of her efforts to win Mandela’s support for nuclear disarmament.“(When)… Nelson Mandela announced that he would be retiring from the presidency of South Africa, we organized a world-wide letter writing campaign, urging him to call for the abolition of nuclear weapons at his farewell address to the United Nations. The gambit worked. At the UN, Nelson Mandela called for the elimination of nuclear weapons, saying, “these terrible and terrifying weapons of mass destruction –why do they need them anyway?” The London Guardian had a picture of Mandela on its front page, with the headline, “Nelson Mandela Calls for the Elimination of Nuclear Weapons.” The New York Times had a story buried on page 46, announcing Mandela’s retirement from the Presidency of South Africa and speculating on who might succeed him, reporting that he gave his last speech as President to the UN, while omitting to mention the content of his speech.”And so it goes, with his death seeming to be imminent, he has become reduced to a symbolic mythic figure, a moral voice, not the politician he always was. He became an adorable grandfather praised for his charities with his political ideas and values often buried in the either of his celebrity. He has insisted that he not be treated as a saint or a savior. Tell that to the media.
As ANC veteran Pallo Jordan told me
“To call him a celebrity is to treat him like Madonna. And that’s not what he is. At the same time, he deserves to be celebrated as the freedom fighter he was.”Watch the coverage and see if that message is coming through, with all of its implications for the struggle in South Africa that still lies ahead.
News Dissector Danny Schechter made six documentaries about Nelson Mandela. He blogs at and edits Comments to
Also See:
The Shocking TRUTH about Mandela the Murderous Marxist
Mike King